Monday, August 31, 2009

Does Exercise Matter For Weight Loss?


Here's my published rebuttal to Time Magazine's cover story from a few weeks ago:

Does Exercise Matter For Weight Loss?

I deconstruct the Time article piece by piece, like this:

"Some of us can will ourselves to overcome our basic psychology, but most of us won't be very successful. 'The most powerful determinant of your dietary intake is your energy expenditure,' says Steven Gortmaker, who heads Harvard's Prevention Research Center on Nutrition and Physical Activity. 'If you're more physically active, you're going to get hungry and eat more.'"

True, you will be hungry and might eat more. What he leaves out is that not only can you eat more, but at some point, you need to eat more to lose weight. At Beachbody, this is one of the most difficult principles we have to teach our customers. At the beginning of an exercise-induced weight loss program, we restrict calories. As a person's body composition changes, so does that person's need for caloric consumption. It's not uncommon for our customers to double the amount of food they need to eat to keep their weight loss moving once they get into good shape. This simple physiological fact renders Cloud's argument moot.


If you've found your way to my page it's likely this isn't shocking information. I'm still just soooo miffed at how such drivel made the cover of a magazine like Time.

6 comments:

elijah said...

What seems awesome to me is how this TIME article's author gets to look back at his career and know he helped convince Americans to exercise less. Despite the benefits to exercise which he reluctantly concedes, such as to reduce the likely hood of diabetes and heart disease, he maintains the articles founding premise to refute the traditional view that Americans could be less fat by exercising more. That's great - the world's most obese society needs to hear this - don't exercise. Truly responsible journalism. Now we can all subsidize a new legion of diabetics and transplanted heart recipients. I hope this author is fucked by a badger.

Micah said...

Right on Steve!

AHHH!!!! These people drive me nuts. So thanks for throwing some of their shit back in their face.

bob banks said...

"...many people eat more—and eat more junk food, like doughnuts—after going to the gym."

Did he actually say that? I mean in particular, the mention of 'doughnuts'? Who the hell craves doughnuts after a workout? (And I happen to love doughnuts).

Steve Edwards said...

He did say that indeed. It's like he was just making stuff up to say. Donuts, pizza, I can't recall what else but, you're right, who craves that stuff during or after a workout? If you bonk you crave sugar, but certainly not fat. He could have said beer. At least there's some science showing it works pretty well for recovery.

Mary Joy (MJ) said...

I agree with you on all points. Now ask yourself why he wrote this. I'm sure the writer, his editors, and the publishers of T:me were aware of the buzz this article would get. Print news is on the wane, and *anything* that will generate adverti$ing dollar$ both off- and online is welcome. Unfortunately, fact and social responsibility are the least of their concerns.

Titanium said...

Couldn't agree more! Funny- I felt compelled to offer a rebuttal to Johnny's blather as well.


http://titaniumpersonaltraining.blogspot.com/2009/08/newsflash-exercise-wont-make-you-thin.html